SDLP Leader Colum Eastwood MP has welcomed US President Joe Biden’s appointment of Joe Kennedy III as US Special Economic Envoy to Northern Ireland.
Mr Eastwood said that the news was a ‘serious appointment by a US President who is serious about Ireland’.
Speaking following the announcement, Colum Eastwood MP said:
“President Biden’s appointment of Joe Kennedy III as US Special Envoy to Northern Ireland is a clear sign of his enduring commitment this place and its people. This is a serious appointment by a US President who is serious about Ireland and about re-establishing the active involvement of a key partner in our peace. With a specific focus on job creation and economic investment, Special Envoy Kennedy will have a mandate to fortify the progress we’ve made by expanding economic opportunities to those communities, like Derry, that have yet to enjoy a significant dividend of peace.
“I have no doubt that Joe Kennedy has the temperament, the tact and the focus necessary to fulfil the sensitive and important role that he has been appointed to. The deep and meaningful personal connection that the Kennedy family has with Ireland will only strengthen the importance of this assignment.
“Joe’s grandfather Robert Kennedy once said ‘the whole human experiment will fail unless it can find unity and mediate its disputes, unless it can follow the paths of economic growth and cooperation, unless, above all, it can realise the equality and brotherhood of man.’ What we need now, more than ever, is to break the politics of division and deadlock that has distracted us from the overwhelming benefits of mediating our disputes in the common interests of all those we represent. Peace must be underpinned by opportunity and prosperity.
“I look forward to working with Special Envoy Kennedy in the weeks and months ahead to deliver more opportunities, particularly for those communities which have yet to experience the sizeable dividend of peace and prosperity.”